Dec. trial set for topless sunbather

LACONIA — A December trial has been set for a woman charged with not wearing a top at the Gilford Town Beach on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend.
Heidi Lilley, 54, is scheduled to stand trial in Laconia circuit District Court on December 15 at 1 p.m. on the misdemeanor complaint of toplessness, which police say violates a beach ordinance (Article G number 7) that prohibits topless sunbathing for women.
Lilley, who is co-organizer of the Free the Nipple NH campaign, had spent two days topless at Weirs Beach in Laconia that weekend and said that she and other members of the movement left at 5 p.m. that Sunday when Weirs Beach was cleared so that an upcoming fireworks show could be set up.
She told the Daily Sun that when they arrived at Gilford Beach some kids yelled at them and said the beach wasn't a nudist camp but she said they ignored them. Shortly there after, she said two women approached them and asked if they realized Gilford Beach was a private beach.
Lilley said she told them she was a Gilford resident, that she paid taxes and had every right to be there. She said one of the women "got into our faces" and was "extremely verbally abusive."
Gilford Police responded and Lilley said they were "very polite and professional." She said they initially told them they could be cited for criminal trespass, however Lilley told them she lived in Gilford and produced identification to prove it.
She said the officers explained there was a Gilford Beach ordinance that prohibits topless sunbathing and then asked them to put on their shirts.
Lilley said all of them complied with the police who then asked if any of them wanted to be cited. She said three of them said "yes" but the police only wrote two summons – one for her and one for another woman. She said the officers explained to them that they violated a beach ordinance not a town ordinance.
The Free the Nipple NH campaign intends to call attention to inequalities between men and women. Lilley said the only thing her organization wants is for women to be able to go to the beach without tops, like men can.
The group took part in an earlier demonstration at Hampton Beach and announced in August that they were targeting Weirs Beach because the city of Laconia has an ordinance that exceeds state law in that it prohibits publicly exposing the female nipple.
Passed in 1998, largely because the city hosts Motorcycle Week, the ordinance also addresses people who encourage women to expose their entire breasts.

Woman Arrested for sale of narcotics (165 w/cut slugged A.CROSS)

LACONIA — Police say they found heroin and meth along with a large quantity of prescription medications when they searched the Pine Street apartment of a 43-year-old woman Tuesday morning.
Andrea Cross of 33 Pine Street, Apartment #3, will be arraigned in Laconia Circuit District Court this morning on a two felony charges for the sale of narcotic drugs.
Police say that they executed a search warrant at her apartment at 11:36 a.m. Tuesday and found 7.5 grams of heroin, a half gram of meth, a sizable quantity of prescription drugs, scales, packaging materials and a quantity of cash.
Police said that actions came after an extensive investigation which began in February of this year in which narcotic officers were able to make several "controlled buys" from the residence, primarily from Cross.
Drugs purchased included, heroin, meth, and a variety of prescription medications. Police say the investigation is on-going and more charges may be filed.

Public hearing for Timber Hill Farm in Gilford set for Monday

GILFORD — The Gilford Planning Board will hold a public hearing on Monday, October 19 at 7 p.m. to take up a site plan application from Andy and Martina Howe for holding farm-to-table events at their 250-acre Timber Hall Farm property on Gunstock Hill Road.
The property is located in a single-family residential zone and has been the site of farm-to-table events for the last several years, including five this past summer, some of which were weddings.
After receiving a complaint from an abutter regarding weddings being held on the Howe's property this summer a cease and desist order was issued by town's code enforcement officer on August 26 which said that the Howes could not resume holding weddings or other similar activities until they had obtained site plan approvals from the planning board.
The Howes appealed the ruling to the Gilford Zoning Board of Adjustment, which held a lengthy meeting two weeks ago which culminated with a 3-1 vote by the board to lift the cease and desist order.
During that meeting, Attorney Patrick Wood, who represented the Howes, said that the issue was the Farm to Table aspect of the business, which he said encompassed weddings as they were a part of selling products which were produced on the farm, and met the standards of the town's zoning ordinance.
Town Planner John Ayer said that the town's cease and desist order also said that site plan approval might be contingent on a land-use variance from the ZBA but that might no longer be required as the ZBA's ruling includes farm-to-table events with weddings as being allowed under the town's zoning ordinance.
The Howes plan calls for construction of a 40 foot by 84 foot timber frame farm with a 20 by 30 foot porch, as well as construction of a sugar house and an irrigation pond. The plan also calls for a parking area and a temporary events area.
Andy Howe said that he is hoping to obtain a building permit this fall and install a foundation and anticipates the barn would be completed in time for the 2017 summer season.
He said that the barn will be constructed of timber harvested from the farm which he will use a portable sawmill to turn into lumber which will be used to build the barn.
''It's going to be an authentic old-fashioned timber frame building with wooden pegs in an old New England style of construction,'' said Howe.
He noted that the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests holds a conservation easement on the property, which allows only agriculture and forestry uses of the land with only agricultural buildings allowed.
He says that last summer, following a washout of one of the scheduled events, a large tent was purchased to protect the events from the weather. Howe said that he was also receiving many inquiries about using the site for other events.
He contacted the Forest Society about the content of the events in order to confirm that they were allowed by the easements, which was the first request to society had ever received about farm-to-table events. Howe said that after an internal committee process was conducted, the society concluded the use was allowed as long as the event was focused on the farm to table meal and created a discretionary consent document which limits the event to 15 years.